Umpire Hair granted Test return

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The Independent Online

The door was today opened for Australian umpire Darrell Hair to return to officiating in top-level international cricket.

Hair, 55, has not taken charge of a match between high-profile countries since the forfeited Oval Test in 2006 when he and Billy Doctrove penalised Pakistan for ball-tampering.

But during a two-day meeting of the International Cricket Council it was decided Hair had undergone a sufficiently lengthy period of rehabilitation away from the spotlight.

"The board have decided that he can he can be appointed to matches involving full member countries once more," confirmed an ICC spokesman.

Although Hair never left the ICC's elite panel of umpires, his duties were reduced to matches involving associate countries.

Hair brought a case of racial discrimination against his employers, the ICC, with whom he is contracted for a further 12 months, but dropped the allegations just seven days into a tribunal in London last October.